Wednesday, 25 May 2011

Two Weekends

Another weekend at the cottage! I meant to post after last week's trip, but the week caught up with me, as usual – just planning what to bring for the long weekend, packing, shopping, getting the house ready to have the cats on their own for 3 days (hat-tip to Cassie who checked in on them), and a very busy work-week filled up the time pretty quickly.

It was too bad that Myles was incapacitated and couldn't come up, but we did enjoy Dodie's company on Saturday and Sunday. She was kind enough to bring Mom up on Saturday so there wasn't any rush for her on Friday night, and Mom really enjoyed being there. I took very few pictures on Saturday, so I didn't get a shot of her enjoying the gazebo, but I can report that she wasn't stuck in the cottage the whole time.

As usual, the flowering crab wasn't opening its blossoms any earlier than it usually does, so we may not get to see them this year, again. Last year we were all set for them, and the hot weather finished them in just a few days. It would be nice if it would bloom when Mom is there, just once!

Ready to come out, soon; but not this weekend.
Work on the lot continues. Last weekend was "take out the garden fence", and Iain just about wore himself away doing that. In some spots, trees had grown right through the fencing, and couldn't be saved (fence embedded in the bark!), so he had to cut them as he took up the fence. Rolling up the fencing for the scrap heap at the Quadeville waystation (formerly "the dump") was partly my job. I really did try to help, but I am a bit feeble physically so Iain did all the heavy work. I moved a few lupin plants and Iain helped with the asparagus (two of them).

Also, we went to put the down-payment on the cottage blueprints, so the project is really, truly, happening!
Iain hard at work on pulling out the old fencing.
You can see a pile of rubbish behind Iain in the picture; it's the rotten boards we had taken from the shed last year. Saturday and Sunday we took all of it down to a dump spot Lloyd is allowing us to use on his property, where it can continue the process of rotting away to nothing. Four loads of bad boards....we are SO glad to have the pickup! Also a load of rolled up rusty fencing and such, to the waystation.
We made a trip to the contractors' place to firm things up with them. The Lorbetski's are very nice to talk to, and we are glad to have them working for us. They have a lovely home (probably a good sign, eh?) and run a maple syrup company on the side. They gave us a quart of what promises to be delicious syrup!
On the way out, we found that a beaver dam (or a natural one) had let go and a huge swamp had drained out too quickly for the culvert below it. Half the road was gone, but there was still room to squeeze by. By the time we got back, the road crew had marked where not to drive.

A bit of a mess.
Iain attacked the old willow-of-many-trunks on Saturday, and also the long-dead cedar, a few balsams, and about two million alders. I exagerate, but it SEEMS like a lot of alders. They are all down and ready to be hauled away.

The willow-of-many-trunks, which has been on a 45 degree angle for years, is finally down.  It was a persistent tree, but not an attractive one.
One of the sweetest little tools Iain owns is a rechargeable lithium powered chainsaw. Ryobi discontinued making these (or at least Home Despot discontinued carrying them) and he snagged the last one in Ottawa (well, Barrhaven, actually – we had to drive out in search of it last year). Now, I know what all you REAL chainsaw guys are thinking, but he really enjoys firing up a saw that stays running. We own a Mastercraft which has been tuned, sharpened, retuned, babied, sung to, and cradled lovingly... and will never run when you need it to. It is a piece of crap. Iain wants me to tell you his record for it is 30ft. He's not kidding – I've seen him throw it! Yes, the Ryobi takes a bit longer, but it is reliable and good for small jobs.

Using the handy Ryobi battery-powered chainsaw.
So next weekend we go after the other two million alders. *sigh*  It wouldn't be so bad, except for their buddies, the two million black flies.

We had to decide what to do with the little maple tree we've been wanting to save. We finally just dug it up and moved it, and said a little prayer. It probably won't make it, but at least it has a chance. I do wish it would survive, the hollow we put it in has been crying for a tree, and it looks so attractive there.

The sweet little maple.
More to follow...

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